A Selection of Songs: Character Playlists Edition

Character playlists are exactly what they sound like: song playlists that are themed around characters. I’ve always loved the idea to them, but I struggle to create any myself. When choosing songs to represent my characters, I tend to ping-pong between being extremely nitpicky or looking for a specific vibe, leaving the pickings scarce. A part of me thinks it’s neat it’s so hard for me to find fitting songs, because perhaps that’s a testament to how out there my characters are, but that may be giving myself too much credit. In any case, as of now I have two character playlists- one for a whole group (12 songs) and one for one character (8 songs.) For this blog post, I figured I’d pick some songs from said playlists and talk about them!


Icicles by The Scary Jokes

The first thing that drew me to this song was the cover. Pink? Check. Playful imagery? Check. Scary or surreal imagery? Also check- all of these things line up with a certain pastel puppeteer of mine. Bonus points for the joke theme and violent lyrics, because that’s also right up her alley. I say this in the best way possible, but this song sounds like it would be on a stressed out teenage girl’s playlist for 3:00 am mental breakdowns. That vibe is also extremely fitting; I love it. The overall meaning of this song, at least in my interpretation, is dealing with repressed anger due to trauma, which is another check for the character box. She doesn’t repress her anger too much anymore, but she did so daily in her past.

Terror adhaerens by Yuki Kajiura

I could not create this list without mentioning a track by Yuki Kajiura, especially when it reminds me of a special interest character of mine. Contrary to the cute cover, this song is an embodiment of dread and hopelessness. The string instruments, which is something I always look for when it comes to this character, create such a sharp, creeping melody. When listening to this song, I can perfectly see a gray, blank landscape with foggy clouds and muddy soil. The song also kicks into a desperate tone further in, but desperate in a way that makes me think of gritted teeth and self destruction. Needless to say, it went straight into the character playlist. I do wish there were more fast paced, fuming songs with string instruments, though.


ព្រោះតែអូន (Because of You) by Sinn Sisamouth 

This song is more the source of inspiration than it is a direct character assignment, but it still reminds me of a character. This song is a Khmer oldie themed around love, and the sound immediately caught me. Something about this song is just so… sunset-sunrise sky colored, and it makes me think of sunlight and devotion. Listening to it lead to the creation of a motherly, yet stubborn Khmer woman with orange clothing and sunflower embroidery. She’s grown since her creation, but I definitely think this is a song she would enjoy. The meaning would remind her of her passed husband. (Sorry about that, by the way.) (You’re still not getting him back though.)


End of the Universe by Gooseworx

This is such a wonderfully goofy song, complete with a sense of otherworldly power and imminent doom. Those aspects alone, paired with the fact that this is carnival music, fits so extremely well with my pain-obsessed clown who should not have been given the power to exist outside of reality. Seriously. Who thought that would be a good idea. Oh, wait, I made them. Anyways, moving on, I think another reason this song fits so well is because of how unserious it sounds. You will never see this character take a singular moment seriously, even in the face of the atrocities they commit on a daily basis. The title itself also makes my brain happy, as this character’s story heavily revolves around universes and immortality. They have been at the end of a universe plenty of times, and there is no exit in sight. 

Author: Amelia Whitaker

I write my heart desires, regardless of the weirdness and absurdity, and fully believe others should do the same. I’ll read anything as long as it catches my eye, but my favorite genre is sci-fi, especially if it goes heavy on science, though I also enjoy fantasy. I adore researching and learning about all sorts of things- biology, space, evolution, history, culture, and more!

2 thoughts on “A Selection of Songs: Character Playlists Edition”

  1. I can definitely relate to having specific songs or playlists for characters or groups.
    Personally, I used to do this too. My friends and I made an imaginary world called Camp Natone which was a play on words for Natural one (this was a DND sort of world we were making.) Anyways, the world was a generic ’70s summer camp that would be inhabited by an escaped serial killer. It was just a DND game where we had to escape a serial killer pretty much. And the playlist I was talking about was filled with 70’s and 80’s music.

  2. I would say that implementing character playlists is a great way to get an overall vibe for both characters you enjoy, but even ones that you are creating as well.

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